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Bayern Rundfahrt
Photo ©: Schaaf

First Edition Cycling News for May 13, 2007

Edited by Laura Weislo with assistance from Susan Westemeyer

McQuaid blasts Basso for 'lies'

UCI President
Photo ©: Gregor Brown
(Click for larger image)

In a press conference before the start of the first stage of the Giro d'Italia, UCI president Pat McQuaid did not mince words when he addressed the topic of Ivan Basso and his admission to involvement in the Operación Puerto doping affair. McQuaid made it clear that he has no sympathy for the Italian, and will not recommend that he get any breaks just because he confessed.

"He has now admitted his guilt but for nine months he lied to everyone - he lied to the cycling family, he lied to the media, he lied to his sponsors, he went into a new team and lied to those sponsors, he lied to everybody and he does not deserve our sympathy," McQuaid emphatically stated.

"The world of cycling does not deserve this. The people who work for cycling week in, week out, for federations, volunteers, the people who spend their time coaching young cyclists in the sport, the people who volunteer to work and stand on roads and corners week in, week out, do not deserve this type of treatment."

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McQuaid also faulted the Italian federations for not pursuing the matter more vigorously last year. "In July last year Ivan Basso was taken out of the Tour de France because he was implicated in Operación Puerto. In October/November last year the UCI prepared a file on the evidence which we had at that time on certain riders, including Ivan Basso. We sent that file to the Italian Federation and they passed it on to CONI, who have the responsibility with dealing with that information. At the time, CONI examined the file, interviewed Basso, then shelved the file."

Basso, who was among 58 riders originally named after Spanish authorities raided the clinic of Eufemiano Fuentes and turned up hundreds of bags of blood, documents and other evidence of a widespread blood doping ring, was excluded from the 2006 Tour de France and left his CSC team because of the scandal. When the Italian federation shelved his case, Basso was freed to sign with another team, and was hired by the Discovery Channel team.

When CONI reopened the case, drawing Basso's confession, the Discovery Channel team suspended Basso, who later stepped down from the team.

McQuaid, Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme, and IPCT president Patrick Lefevere recently met to discuss actions to help fight doping in the peloton, and indicated that random antidoping controls would increase.

Cyclingnews' recent coverage of 'Operación Puerto'

May 18, 2009 - Valverde to start Catalunya
May 15, 2009 - Valverde not welcome in Denmark
May 14, 2009 - Spanish federation wants proof in Valverde case
May 13, 2009 - Spanish Olympic Committee defends Valverde
May 12, 2009 - Valverde responds to sanction
May 11, 2009 - Italian tribunal delivers Valverde two-year suspension
May 8, 2009 - Valverde case: Italian Olympic Committee defends Torri
May 7, 2009 - Valverde to take legal action against CONI prosecutor
May 5, 2009 - WADA and Spanish federation join CONI and UCI on Valverde
May 1, 2009 - International Cycling Union joins in on Valverde's hearing in Italy

Cyclingnews' complete coverage of Operación Puerto

Hoy unsuccessful in first attempt

Hoy during his world record attempt.
Photo ©: AFP
(Click for larger image)

British cyclist Chris Hoy was unable to break the world record for the kilometre at altitude Saturday in Bolivia. He will try again on Sunday.

At the Alto Irpavi velodrome in La Paz, Hoy rode the kilometre in 59.103 seconds, which was .228 seconds slower than the record set by Arnaud Tournant seven years ago. According to AFP, Hoy's father, David, said that the temperatures were not favourable.


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by AFP Photo

Basso stays home for CONI's submission

By Gregor Brown

Ivan Basso
Photo ©: Sirotti
(Click for larger image)

Ivan Basso was slated to take a vacation with his family for three weeks after a long hearing process with Italian Olympic Committee's (CONI) antidoping prosecutors but will instead stay at home. According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, the 29 year-old, who admitted his involvement with Spaniard Eufemiano Fuentes, will remain at his home in Cassano Magnago until his case is deferred to the Italian cycling federation (FCI) disciplinary commission.

Head CONI prosecutor Ettore Torri wanted to have Basso's interrogation documents (based on three hearings, May 2, May 7 and May 10) prepared to send on Friday but was not ready and will wait until Monday, May 14. Before departing Basso will want to hear what type of suspension Torri has recommended to the FCI.

Basso, known as 'Birillo' and number '2,' faces up to two years and the stripping of his 2006 Giro victory. On May 7, he admitted to working with Fuentes but, a day later, he publicly watered-down his admission. "It was only attempted doping," he commented conference room full of journalists and photographers in Milan.

He claimed to not ever using the blood extracted and found in Fuetes' labs. "I never used the blood in Madrid," he noted.

Under the defence terms, there will be a two week period before FCI will make a decision.

Prudhomme: Landis not Tour de France champion

Despite Floyd Landis' arbitration hearing being still several days away, Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme said that his organisation does not consider Landis to the 2006 winner. Prudhomme was quoted in the German newspaper Frankfurter Algemeine Zeitung on Friday as saying "For us, he's not the winner."

Landis is scheduled to begin his arbitration with the US Antidoping Agency (USADA) on May 14 where he will try to refute the tests from the French antidoping laboratory LNDD that show he used synthetic testosterone prior to winning stage 17 of the 2006 Tour de France.

Trampusch returns

Gerhard Trampusch of Team Volksbank is ready to return to racing after recovering from Lyme disease. He will ride the Carinthian Open Sunday for his Austrian Professional Continental team.

"The race is a form test," he said. "Time is running out. I won't push myself too hard and will try to conserve my strength. Otherwise I'll be kaput again."

Directeur sportif Patrick Vetsch was glad to have the Austrian rider back. "The sooner he can start again, the better. Gerhard should simply tray out a little racing and get back into the team work, but not worry about results. I just can't expect that from him right now."

Alejandro Barrajo: a link between two lives

Borrajo is well suited to the US racing style.
Photo ©: Bill McCarrick
(Click for larger image)

At 27 years old, Alejandro Borrajo landed on the US domestic scene after joining the Rite Aid Cycling Team to confront the prospect of racing his bike and securing his future. Since arriving on the NRC circuit in March, the aspiring sprinter has notched up multiple wins and stood on the podium in nearly every race he's entered. Cyclingnews' Kirsten Robbins found out why he turned his back on European racing to start fresh in the USA.

Life can be a struggle for some Argentinean families due to the nation's economic turbulence, but Alejandro Borrajo's family was hit with an additional hardship following the tragic death of his mother, Christina Borrajo, when he was just eleven years old.

Borrajo explained that the family brought her to hospital with what was thought to be a common cold from which she never recovered. "We don't know exactly what happened but it looked like my mother had an allergy to penicillin and that is what the doctors gave her to help with the cold," he remembered. "So she went to the hospital with a cold and that was it, she never came home."

His family of three other siblings, Armando, Adriana and Anibal, remained glued to one another under the guidance and perseverance of their father Armando Borrajo Sr., a top ranked police officer from the Buenos Aires. The close knit family continued to use cycling as a means of quality time together, something they had enjoyed their mother being a part of.

"There are two parts to my life," revealed Borrajo. "The first part is my life before my mother died and the second part is my life where my father and grandparents took care of us. But, both of my lives involved cycling and it was a big part of our lives when I was growing up"

Read the full interview here.

It's not too late - enter the Fantasy Giro game!

(Click for larger image)

Even though the race has already started, there's still plenty time to join in the fun at this year's Fantasy Giro game at Cyclingnews. You can join until stage 6 begins on Friday May 18 and you can compete equally with players that have joined earlier in the tour.

There are only hours to go until the Giro game kicks off this Saturday, May 12 with the 24km team time trial from Caprera to La Maddalena. We've updated the start list with the latest riders in this year's Giro. You can play for free for the first five stages!

Try the game out and see how best to play. It's easy to play the Grande Tour games - all you need to do is pick your dream team of 15 from the riders racing in this year's Giro start list. Then each day, pick nine riders to race for your fantasy team from these 15. You'll need a good combination of climbers, sprinters, and general classification riders. For more details go to the rules section of the site. It's a great way to follow the Giro.

Tifosi Optics for Daily Stage Prize

Tifosi glasses
Photo ©:
(Click for larger image)
In addition to the Grand Prize, the fantastic Wilier Triestina Izoard Lampre-Fondital team replica bicycle worth $4750 USD, there are 39 other prizes on offer this year. A pair of Tifosi Optics "Forza" glasses will be awarded each day to the manager with the highest "stage" points. You don't need to have paid for a team to win this prize in stages 1-5. Register your teams now!

The Tifosi Optics "Forza" glasses feature High Speed Red Fototec lenses. These shades are a favorite of Toyota-United sprinter Ivan Dominguez. The lenses turn from the red color pictured here to a deep red,nearly smoke when in contact with UV rays. Red lenses are key for increasing contrast on the road pavement. The Forza is constructed with a durable Grilamid TR-90 frame and impact-resistant polycarbonate lenses for the ultimate in race performance.

Wilier Triestina Izoard Lampre-Fondital team replica bicycle
Photo ©: Cyclingnews
(Click for larger image)
Full prize roster

- Grande Prize Wilier Triestina Izoard Lampre-Fondital team replica bicycle
- Daily Stage Winner prizes of Tifosi Optics "Forza" featuring High Speed Red Fototec lenses
- Zipp SL handlebars, 145 Stem, 300 Crankset and 185 Bottom Bracket
- Dura-Ace WH-7801-SL Wheelset The WH-7801-SL scandium wheelsets
- Saris Bones Rack
- HED handlebars
- Giro Atmos helmets
- Cheetah Bars for optimum performance

To register your teams for the game go to

Good luck!

The Fantasy Cyclingnews Team

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